asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Whether a 1901 memorial dated November 1880, signed by upwards of 100 collectors of Customs, drawing attention to the anomalous position in which they are placed with respect to the improved scale of salary granted to their subordinates (the examining officers and clerks) has been taken into consideration by Her Majesty's Government; and, if so, whether any decision has been arrived at?
§ LORD FREDERICK CAVENDISH
Sir, the Board of Customs has, for some time past, been engaged in revising, with the approval of the Treasury, its various departments, in-door and outdoor, in London and at the outports. In the course of that revision, a great number of memorials have been presented directly to the Treasury by various bodies of Customs officers, which the Board of Customs had declined to transmit itself, preferring claims of various kinds for improved payments founded on comparisons with other branches of the Service. This is the position of the collectors. It is impossible, with any justice to the public, to deal with these cases rapidly. They involve not only the expensive process of levelling up, but complaints from those up to whom the level is brought nearer that their old superiority is compromised. The memorials of the collectors and of others are receiving attentive consideration by the Treasury. I may, perhaps, be permitted to add that the decision of them in any sense just to the public is not rendered easier by the constant pressure kept upon the Treasury through private Members of Parliament.